Senate Recommends $1.7 Billion In Education Cuts

CREDIT: Jacquelyn Martin, AP

The Senate Appropriations Committee advanced a labor, health and education bill for the next fiscal year out of committee Thursday. The U.S. Department of Education would lose $1.7 billion in the Senate spending bill compared to its current funding levels. Those cuts were significantly less than the House Appropriations Committee, which cut the department by $2.8 billion.

In the House bill, the U.S. Department of Education would lose 80 percent of its research budget and all funding for preschool development grants, School Improvement Grants, and the Advanced Placement Test Fee program, which allows low-income high school students to afford tests that provide them with college credits. The U.S. Department of Education had the deepest cuts in the bill.

The U.S. Department of Education gathers data on education spending in state government, student achievement, and college affordability.The preschool development grants create and expand high-quality preschool in high-need areas. It would also lose all funding for the “Ready to Learn” program, which helps support educational television programs such as Sesame Street. The House Appropriations Committee approved the spending bill on Wednesday by 30-21.

By contrast, the Senate bill would reduce School Improvement Grant funding by more than $50 million, cut Advanced Placement by $5.6 million, cut State Assessments by $28 million and cut Magnet Schools Assistance by $6.6 million.